Here comes the voice of the insider outsider: Maybe, maybe you all are masked Israelis? Reading all this heated and friendly debates I feel mostly at home, as this is the language of debate so often frequent in my country (especially on a "politica" discussion on TV and in the Knesset (Parliament).
But then I remember that back in 1976 in London during a scorching and most unusual heat wave, I had the same feeling. The British lost their cool and even the policemen were far from being polite. Everybody was swearing! So, it's all a question of weather...
In my Sodot book (sorry, still only in Hebrew) a Christian lover says to Anna, his Jewish girlfriend, "The Jews are always knowing all the answers, right?!"
To which she answers, "My name is Anna."
Then tears come to his eyes and he says, "Forgive me. I'm such an ignorant."
And indeed, every musician has a name, and so has every human being. Is it right to assume that the silent majority has no objection, that silence always signals acceptance? Not everybody knows to sing or prefers to do so in a choir alone. The beauty of humanity is that we are so versatile and different, that every human being has a unique personality. Would you like to live in a world where everybody walks in step with the Leader? This is the universe of Saddam Hussein, an universe we agree has no right of existence, not only in Iraq etc but also not in our Western democracies. When you use the "Do not supply hope to the Enemy" argument, the danger is that you might become the Enemy mirrored. It is an old saying that teaches, "Choose well your enemy, because you might become him." We cannot choose the enemy, but we still can choose not to adopt its arguments.
Regretfully, I must say that in my country this sort of arguments has gained much ground. Nothing is more persuasive than fear and hatred. So, we have stopped providing the Hammass with Hope. The result is that Despair aids them even more.
Life could have been so much better if we knew beforehand which is the right path to go. Since we do not know, and since to a large extent our ignorance is fabricated by The Leaders everywhere, even in our enlighted democracies, we must voice our gut feelings, we must balance the self assurance of our goverments with our huge question mark. Of course we are all living inside our skins, and a far away human life has no face. But what if Iraq was in Alabama, now, in 2003, with USA's present technology, not two hundred twenty seven years ago? Won't you rather ask, demand of your goverment to first try any diplomatic means possible, the UN, etc, and then hit only well defined military targets?
It has worked some twenty years ago when Israel hit the nuclear Iraqi plant. For sure it can be implemented today with the much higher technology USA has access to now.